Disclaimer: I have a ton of friends in the fashion blog world. I admire their passion for fashion and their ability to continually stick with their blogs and to keep pushing themselves to grow as a fashion blogger. This post is not a bashing, rather my personal reflection on why I left and how leaving the fashion blog world was one of the most relieving things ever.
It’s not like I woke up one day and said “I’m going to start a blog.” (to those who do, congratulations) No. I’m a little more calculated than that. In fact, I’ve done my research, even paid a pretty penny for this blog to look the way it does. (On top the many freebie webinars/classes/training I’ve done on web design and development). I’m a perfectionist by heart, but my younger years have done me a favor. I’ve hinted before, and finally am able to speak on how I got to this point. Little known secret:
I’m a recovering fashion blogger.
I’d link the blog here, but because I got rid of my automatic payments of hosting services/advanced CSS settings and other fancy things that made the blog the blog, I can’t. I kind of have discontinued the site, rebranded and BOOM! Piece of Clareity was born. Even though from 2012-2015 I was an avid blogger (either posting my own material, social media-ing, attending fashion blogger events) and was trying to make a name for myself/stand out in the Washington DC fashion blogger world, I lost the spark.
Why did I leave the fashion blog world? That “spark” was gone. Instead of the blog being a fun hobby, it became a chore. I was beginning to notice I was not as excited to share my passion for minimalist fashion, I’d rather focus on my stats and how many hits the blog got that day.
- I knew that my passion for fashion was not as strong. I began to start losing interest in learning and absorbing everything that was fashion. When Vogue, Glamour, InStyle would come to the mailbox, I’d kind of go “ugh, what do I HAVE to wear now? How much do I have to save up in my already non-existent savings account for this season’s trend?” This was the first sign I’d rather be reading for fun rather than for “work.”
- I would rather have… read a book and write a review than spend oodles of money on an article of clothing and have the perfect lighting/staging/photographer. I was also never really innovative/creative/stylish enough to really make my mark on such a huge realm of the world. What would my boring same 10 piece closet bring to the blog world?
- Practicality over style… we all have self-image issues at times. And in the beginning, I didn’t think anything of it. I was blogging for me, for my own “get dressed in the morning” mentality. I used the blog as an accountability tool. I had no idea how “competitive” and “forward thinking” the style world is. I was never going to be able to wear a Givenchy evening gown to a day job which required me to set up tables one day, or attend a meeting with the VP of the Division the next…
- My wallet began to cry… Imagine this. You graduate grad school, you’re barely making enough money to cover rent/student loans and you decide to go into this ultra-stylish blog realm. Naturally, you are going to get yourself caught up in the “I NEED to stay current, and keep producing original content.” Easier said than done “Rise above and be an original.” How can we be effective “originals” when we are being dictated some sort of style in any sort of media/outlet possible? I was beginning to become overwhelmed.
- I lost my own sense of style… I was beginning to notice that I would NEVER wear half the stuff I had in all my shopping carts. Why was I buying this item? Oh cause it was on another blogger’s blog, or because, well, every fashion blogger needed that to be known in the blogging world. I was wearing things that made me self-conscious, or was just not practical. Everyone could see the nerves, the lack of confidence, the “something isn’t right” attitude. Why conform to the social convention if you don’t like the convention?
- My closet became overwhelming… I had all these rules to follow. I had to make sure that I looked “good” and didn’t “wear that last week.” It was becoming exhausting. I tried keeping track via spreadsheets, I’d skip a day of blogging, I’d skip 2 days (since I was repeating), I would do a load of laundry every night just to keep up. My weekly dry cleaning bill was like 3 lattes, and personally, I’d prefer the caffeine rather than the clothes…
- I couldn’t keep up…I don’t have a fancy camera. I never had “perfect lighting” and I was so uncomfortable having the Mr. take photos of me in an empty field/winery/street. I also couldn’t keep up with the ever-changing industry. I could barely keep up with my daily to-do list, how was I going to keep up with the fashion blog?
- I was getting frustrated…with myself. The blog was becoming more of a burden than a fun hobby. I wasn’t able to be creative and write stories around the outfits/reflections on how life is awesome, etc… I was posting outfits for the sake of keeping up, not for the sake of myself. I originally started the fashion blog for myself, with minimal readers, but as the networking continued, so too did the demands of trying to keep up and write about what I was wearing, not necessarily the person behind the clothes.
At the end of the day, when something becomes more work than fun, why continue? If you know your “brand” is changing, or shifting, why continue in a niche that doesn’t work for you? How can you become an “expert” in a field if you aren’t devoted to learning and processing any information you absorb? If the information isn’t being absorbed anymore, isn’t that NOT a good sign? Like if you lost interest in something, that means you’ve moved focus and your life is changing (probably for the better). Take my advice, don’t force yourself into a blog niche you aren’t too crazy and passionate about. Trust me. You’ll get swept up in the analytics, the glitz/glam, bright lights, shiny objects, you won’t be able to be yourself- instead you become just a clone of everyone else.
So I took some time off. I took my entire pregnancy and most all of maternity leave to really come up with a re-branding strategy and a refocus on where I was heading and what I was doing with blogging. I knew I needed to get back into the swing of writing- mostly for myself, but also too, for my friends who are experiencing the same sort of struggle. My old fashion blogger self couldn’t relate to anyone but other bloggers, and I felt superficial. I needed to get back to the person I am, and where I was going. Thus, Piece of Clareity was born.
I know, “Piece of Clareity” can sound so “self-absorbed” but since this is Clare’s piece of the internet, and there are a little tidbits here and there that can help you realize “you too aren’t alone, someone else is going through it too…” wouldn’t that shed some “clarity?” And since my name is Clare…clareity… need a refresher on the point of the blog? I would rather be a brief comedic disruption to everyone’s busy daily life than become just another girl wearing clothes…
Even though I miss the UC life at times, I am sort of relieved that that phase of life is behind me, and I can start focusing on the future. After all, if we don’t take time to reevaluate who we are and where we are going, how can we live a Level 10 life?! Sometimes, all you need is a little piece of clareity to get you through til tomorrow. And I hope you take away a little piece of optimism rather than try to sell you clothes…
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